The Amazon Rainforest is burning. In August of this year, Brazil experienced 80,000 fires and over half of those took place in the Amazon. The trees are being burnt down to make way for agricultural land.
The solution to this global environmental crisis? Plant heaps and heaps trees.
That’s what YouTube influencers thought, at least. The likes of Mr Beast, jeffreestar, Hannah Stocking and more, have formed the #TeamTrees project to combat environmental degradation. So far, they’ve raised around $6 million, and for each of their fan’s dollars donated a tree will be planted. However, it turns out that this initiative may not even be that effective.
Look, I don’t mean to be the negative Nelly here so I will preface the fact that, yes, more trees are better than less. But considering our world is in a pretty pressing state right now, it turns out that waiting 100 years for tree seedlings to grow and effectively reduce emissions is probably not the best solution. Alas, we are at 6 million dollars and 6 million trees.
To make matters more complicated: these trees may not even survive. Eike Lüdeling, department head of horticultural sciences at University of Bonn told The Verge that trees actually die quite quickly if they’re not thoroughly looked after, he said: “Sometimes it’s probably a better idea to plant fewer trees and really take care of them.”
20 million trees is a hell of a goal and it begs the question: who the heck is going to look after them?
Apparently, the Arbor Day Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to planting trees has partnered up with the #TeamTrees project to plant and look after them. However, on the organisations page it states that they have “over one million members, supporters and valued partners.”
And I don’t mean to state the obvious here but one million partners isn’t a lot compared to 20 million trees…it’s, not even a lot compare to 6 million. They’ve got their hands full.
In the campaign video for #TeamTrees project, YouTuber Mark Rober, says “it’s freaking time to do something about climate change. Plus we just really love trees so this is like a fist pump to mother Earth.”
But considering watching YouTube videos leave a massive carbon footprint, perhaps he and other YouTubers should be using their fists to pump down the amount of content they produce… Just a wee thought.